An Exploratory Survey Measuring Burnout Among Academic Librarians in the Southeast of the United States

Document Type




The main purpose of this work is to uncover and identify the issues that academic librarians consider important in the attainment of work–life balance. This work will focus on exploring their experiences with different dimensions of burnout.


The topic of burnout is explored by analyzing the results of a survey based on the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI), which was distributed among librarians at a group academic institutions that are members of the Association of Southeastern Research Libraries (ASERL).


The findings of this study do not demonstrate evidence of burnout among the sample population. However, the results do present plenty of opportunities for further exploration such as the relationship between burnout and personal factors, including LGBTQA + status and race or ethnic minority status.

Research limitations/implications

Further exploration of the topic of burnout should be followed up with more qualitative studies, especially those employing interviews.

Practical implications

Improvement of human resource practices, which reduces the incidence of burnout among academic librarians, is something that can only be accomplished at the organizational level. Human resource practices can create a work environment that enhances productivity by improving the quality of life of employees.


This work explores and assesses academic librarian burnout, among those working in academic institutions in the southeastern United States. To date, no study has been undertaken that looks at burnout across broad types of work performed by academic librarians and librarians at different institutions.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

APA Citation

Colon-Aguirre, M. and Webb, K.K. (2020), "An exploratory survey measuring burnout among academic librarians in the southeast of the United States", Library Management, 41(8/9), pp. 703-715.